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Old 04-10-2009, 09:43 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
I sometimes see trucks from the same company traveling really close together on the freeway (less than a truck length apart). Presumably they're doing this to save fuel. In that case, the two drivers would have to agree to split the prize.
Wouldn't both the lead and the tail save fuel? The tail 'cause it's drafting' The lead 'cause it's being drafted.

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Old 04-10-2009, 09:48 PM   #22 (permalink)
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I believe the lead truck would only save fuel if they were extremely close together, not 1 truck length.
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Old 04-10-2009, 11:35 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Demian View Post
You run pretty hard if you are doing 35,000 per quarter. that's 2700 per week average. I am averaging about 2200 per week on my fleet @ about 5.9mpg.
I don't feel like I'm running all that hard. The line for the fuel bonus is 30,000 miles. The safety bonus is 40,000 miles; I'll never get that here, especially with the shape our economy's in.


Quote:
Your mileage is IMPRESSIVE. I never averaged above 7.2 when I was running and that was many years ago on a 2001 engine with alot less epa bull****. What engine is your truck running? and are you willing to disclose what company you work for? I would really like a contact number for those wheel covers. I don't know the east coast very well, is it really flat? getting above 8 mpg is like a dream come true if it includes mountains.
Thanks. I'd love to take the credit for the 7+, but with the way they have the trucks set up, they just instituted a regulation of 7.25. If you don't meet that, you're fired. The company is MVT
When I call monday, I'll try and find out the manufacturer and post it here. In the meantime, I found these. I've seen them on select Schneider trucks. Funny, they're on their webpage.

As for the east, no, it's pretty mountainous. I mainly run in the Appalachian mountains. Every now and then I run up into the Adirondaks, etc. I've found that it is harder to get the higher mileages in flat lands. When I leave home in East TN, it's a steady, unnoticeable upgrade, so initially, it's hard to get better than five. But when I get into Virginia, up to Harrisonburg, it's very "up and down-ey". I've learned to make the best mileage going up, and I'll make gains going downhill. When in flatlands, every little cross/head wind affects the MPG and it's hard to even get 8. I've picked up in Cleavland going to Nashville before with a 5,000 lb load, and cannot manage 7.5 until I get into KY where there are downhills with trees blocking the wind.

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I wouldn't buy the lug covers. They stick out quite a bit more in my experience and while the surface is more aerodynamic, I don't think you will get much benefit with the extra mass/volume churning up the air.
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If you really want the harley, you can cheat to get it. It's a lot easier to do since you are already so close.
Naw, I'm not going to cheat. I'd feel like I was cheating myself more than the company. "Why have I spent the 9 months learning how to earn it?" I look at earning it as a challenge. When I eek out 8 mpg out of a hard day, it's rewarding. The last three days of this week ( I just went on vacation), I got 8.5 doing a 3 stopper in NJ traffic, then out to middle VA. Next, mid VA to So. GA, I got 9 mpg. So. GA to Lakeland, FL, 10.1. Lakeland, FL to Nashville, 10.1.

Quote:
lets say you are doing 8.3 mpg at 2700 miles per week. that is 314 gallons of fuel. now you know you need 9.3 to be sure of the harley so... 9.3 mpg for 2700 miles is 290 gallons. so each week you need to add 24 gallons.. or 5 a day (assuming weekends off). is ~$700 worth of personal fuel expense worth a $25k harley to you? I would say yes. If you can win without cheating you get a lot more respect though! but, honestly, in this economy... Take the freaking bike while you can get it. I know I can't offer bonuses like that.
With the peoplenet satillite system, they track every engine diagnostic, including short/long idle, av. speed, mpg, etc. I'm sure at the end of the quarter they check the actualy check the fueling vs. miles to make sure they kinda jive.

Quote:
The wheels that lift are called Drop axles or Tag axles and they are different than standard drive axles. The amount of weight your truck can pull has to do with the number of wheels (and the size of the tires) touching the ground. His truck can weigh 34k on the drive axles unless he has special supersingles on, but they looked normal. Adding a tag axle would allow him to weigh between 44k and 51k depending on where it is added, what kind of tire width, and state regs. This costs ~10k. Converting his rear axle to a drop axle would be quite a job, but since his rear axle does no actual driving its not undoable, just too expensive to be worth it unless he travels empty alot. (you can only weigh ~20k on a single axle, so it's only good for severly light loads).
It's a tag. I would like a drop axle, because the drop frame trucks are in high demand by our shipper. So alot of the time, we will run from NY/NJ/CT/MA, etc empty if a quick backhaul cannot be found. They pay round trip miles, but they'd like to get paid on top of it if they can .


Quote:
Check your engine temps and Brake temps before you go adding any blocking material underneath the truck. Reduces airflow is great for MPG but overheating your brakes could mean death, and overheating your engine could mean loss of job.
The two smaller holes on the non-wrecked trucks I looked at today, are for fog lights. They never replaced them, so they're just open, and will be covered as a test. Around the center, the bolt holds I spoke of were for attaching a metal grill/grate to it. I might try to reduce the opening at first to see the effects.
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Old 04-10-2009, 11:49 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
This is a really cool thread. Welcome to the forum.


Do you have any say in how tight your cab/trailer gap is? I have read that the smaller the gap, the better.
Usually yes. With this company, all the 5th wheels are fixed, and are as close as they can be without damaging the cab.

Quote:
I sometimes see trucks from the same company traveling really close together on the freeway (less than a truck length apart). Presumably they're doing this to save fuel. In that case, the two drivers would have to agree to split the prize.

I'm going to have to say no on the fuel mileage part. Although if done correctly, drafting would probably work, but it's just drivers being stupid and/or impatient.

It's better to take the loss, back off, allow the following distance as to not have to "brake - fuel, repeat". It's awful hard to follow that close and not be a nervous wreck. You'd have to be pretty trusting of the driver in front of you, and even then, he cannot control what happens in front of him.

In '05, I rearended the driver I was running with (go ahead and joke), but I wasn't technically tailgating, but I didn't have as much distance as I needed. An empty flatbed in front of him nearly stopped in the middle of I-26 in Columbia, SC, because there was a retread laying across the lane. My friend narrowly missed hitting him, and I narrowly missed stopping. lol. Hitting another truck is terrifying at any speed. I'd slowed to less than 10mph, yet when pulling 46k lbs in a shipping container, it's hard to stop it. It took me a couple of years to feel comfortable in a truck again. The point: take the following distance; It will pay off more than the mpg.

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